So you can read my books

Wednesday, April 8, 2020


“The only way to keep your health 
is to eat what you don’t want, 
drink what you don’t like, 
and do what you’d rather not.”
- Mark Twain

Ghost of Mark Twain rambling by 
in this Time of Plague.

I have always believed, 
and I still believe, 
that whatever good or bad fortune 
may come our way,

 we can always give it meaning 
and transform it 
into something of value.

Old Thoreau keeps telling me 

“The cost of a thing is the amount of what I will call life 

which is required to be exchanged for it, immediately or in the long run.” 

Now as much as it galls me, I reckon I believe that.

Which means the cost of a lot of folks' dreams are darn high.  

I wonder if those dreams' value turns out to be worth it.

It galls me even more that I agreed with that scoundrel, Freud, when he wrote:

 “It is impossible to escape the impression that people commonly use false standards of measurement 

that they seek power, success and wealth for themselves and admire them in others, 

and that they underestimate what is of true value in life.” 

Personally, I believe ...

it is in the heart that true value lies ...

 a loving heart is riches, and riches enough, ... 

without it, intellect is poverty and wealth but rags.

 One values a thing when one can’t attain it ...

which could explain I suppose why folks value their dreams so.


Monday, April 6, 2020

No "Shelther" in This Place

By unattributed - Photograph in the Ernest Hemingway Photograph Collection, John F. Kennedy Presidential Library, and Museum, Boston., Public Domain,

Should we survive this unusual time, each of us will have our own unique tale of this national lockdown.

Ernest, Hadley, and Bumby Hemingway in their apartment in Paris in 1924.
John F. Kennedy Presidential Library

But Hemingway, being Hemingway, 
has most of us beat.

 Though not in a way that I would brag about, 

but Hemingway, being Hemingway, had no problem with it.

In the summer of 1926, Hemingway was on the cusp of fame.  

Still married to Hadley, he acquired the trappings of a celebrity author he felt was necessary ...

including a fashionable mistress, Pauline Pfeiffer.

 By Not specified, owned by John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston - John F. Kennedy Library, Ernest Hemingway Collection, direct link to photo here, Public Domain,
Hadley was church-mouse–poor, Pauline was an heiress. 

Hadley was plain and meek; 

Pauline was a sleek Vogue editor with a commanding personality.

Getting disgusted yet?  

It gets better ... ah, worse.

When confronted by Hadley about it, Hemingway grew furious saying she was the true offender.  

It would have been perfect if she had not dragged it out in the open.

Hemingway refused to give up his mistress. 

In fact, 
Pauline became a permanent fixture in the bruised marriage.

Hemingway chose to go to Madrid for the bullfights, leaving Hadley with an ill Bumby 

o go to friends, the Murphys, in their beach estate, Villa America.

They promptly exiled Hadley and Bumby out of their estate to protect their own children 

when their doctor found the boy to have whooping cough.

F. Scott Fitzgerald and his wife, Zelda, heard of this, having a lease on a small house nearby, 

and offered it as a quarantine shelter to them.

The Murphys and Fitzgeralds kept “a grand distance from us poisonous ones,” 

Hadley reported to Hemingway, although both families sent them provisions.

It only gets worse from here.

 You guessed, right?  

Pauline dropped by.  

She'd had whooping cough as a child 
and so was immune.

Soon Hemingway joined them, 

setting the stage for what must have been one of the odder and more claustrophobic households in literary history. 

The idea of sharing a two-bedroom house with his mistress, an angry wife, 

a contagious, sick toddler, and a hovering nanny might have brought a lesser man to his knees, 

ut Hemingway later described the setting as “a splendid place to write.”


At the end of each evening, the group mounted their empty bottles upside down on the fence spikes. 

By the time the Hemingways and Pfeiffer left a few weeks later, these trophies ran the entire length of the fence.

No wonder the ghost of Mark Twain detests the man.  

Midnight, on the mantle behind him, is none too fond of him either.

What do you think?

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Be the Eye of the Hurricane_IWSG POST

The storm of COVID-19 is all around us.  

We must strive to be eye of that hurricane. 

Easier said than done, right?

I don't know where you are in this storm.  I have no crystal ball.  

And the only gypsy I know is a ghost cat ... and you know cats ... ghost cats are even worse in telling you anything.

They just roll their eyes at the dumb things we humans do.

Anna has an interesting title to her IWSG post: Don't Drink the Kool-Aid:

In Florida, the college students are still packing the sands for spring break ... nary a mask on any of them.

The Mardi Gras parades were a virus bomb which is now making New Orleans the new epicenter for the coronavirus.

As of last week, masks were not worn by the donor techs where ... don't want to frighten the donors. Sigh.

I am looked at strangely because of my mask ... but not at the hospitals I deliver blood to.  They all wear masks.

Besides, I have a co-worker who coughs her congested cough with her mouth open ... every other minute.

I'm in the wrong age bracket to not wear a mask.

We should learn the Lessons of 
the Spanish Flu of 1918

But enough about me.  
What do you think about me?

No. Just joking.
 How are you doing?

Try to boost your immune system by taking:
Getting enough sleep.

Vitamin D3
Vitamin K2
Vitamin C
Echinacea & Golden Seal
Elderberry  Syrup
A good Probiotic

Every Storm passes.

Panic is your worst enemy.

Use your mind,

Take refuge in the Father.

Know you are not alone.

My heart is with you all. 

Monday, March 30, 2020

Where Do YOU Find Yourself?


Of course I'm going to start with me.  

I'm a male.  

But enough about Me.  
"What do YOU think about me?"
as the starlet said to Harvey Weinstein. 

Ah, but we know how that ended, 
don't we?

 I'm a rare blood courier taking blood to quarantined hospitals, 

entering the back way down long winding halls often filled with coughing patients and hospital staff.

And I'm in one of the more vulnerable age brackets.

But I find myself needed by ill patients
whose numbers grow daily.

What do you then?

You stand your ground.


We face an invisible enemy.  

It is growing stronger.  

It floats in the air, 

lies in wait on infected surfaces, 

flies on the waves of germ-infected coughs 

(which travel at 100 feet per second.)


As intelligent adults we access the situation, 
ascertain the most reasonable response,
and we adapt.



No, I am not going to point you to my affordable ebooks and audio books found in my sidebar.

(Ah, I guess I just
sneakily did, didn't I?)

 Mercy Thompson's tales
 are a 15 riveting book series.
Lorelei King mesmerizingly 
narrates the books.


A two book series with rave reviews:

 “Immersive, involving, suspenseful, and intriguing, with a main character you’ll love.” 
—Lee Child, 
#1 internationally bestselling author of the Jack Reacher novels




No matter what you choose to do ...


Just kidding.

Be Smart. 
Stay Healthy.

All things pass ...
 even kidney stones. 

That last was from Midnight.

Wednesday, March 25, 2020


This Just In:

Louisiana has the fastest 
rate of growth 
of coronavirus cases 
in the world, 
Gov. John Bel Edwards said.

"The state has the third highest number
 of cases per capita in the country -- 
behind New York and Washington state,"
Edwards said.

Whoa, right?

Feeling cooped up?  
Travel the world with Mark Twain!

I have 29 audio books 
available for download on 
Amazon or Audible ...

all affordably priced.

Some 45 Kindle books.
Many priced at 99 cents.

Want a sampler of my work?
Audio, Kindle, or Print versions are all affordable.

Want to brave Mummies, Star Gods,
and petty politics in 1895 Egypt
with Mark Twain and Oscar Wilde?

If not, I understand.

Another idea:

Audible is offering free audio books 
for children.
For as long as schools are closed,
Audible is open.

Stay safe and well 
during this time.


I will be walking down germ-infested 
hospital halls
past coughing patients.

The odds are not with me
especially at my age bracket,
but ill patients need blood
especially in these times.

In this darkness,
I imagine 
a bit of a star in each 
human soul. 

To help nourish
that light
is an honor.


Monday, March 23, 2020


 The beach crowds at Spring Break (whose partiers brought back Covid - 19 to their colleges)

The crowds on Bourbon Street during the St. Patrick's Day block long alcohol-hazed night.

The oblivious crowds at D.C.'s Cherry Blossom Festival ...

American young people seem blissfully ambling into the arms of our most recent plague.

Last check before my weekend hospital gauntlet,   

Louisiana was reporting 479 confirmed cases of COVID-19, one of the highest numbers in the country. 

Ten people had died. 

The majority of cases are in New Orleans, which now has one confirmed case for every 1,000 residents. 

New Orleans had held Mardi Gras celebrations just two weeks before its first patient, with more than a million revelers on its streets.

A respiratory therapist there told a shuddering story to a reporter.

Many of his patients are relatively young, in their 40s and 50s, 

and have minimal, if any, preexisting conditions in their charts. 

He is overwhelmed, stunned by the manifestation of the infection, both its speed and intensity. 

" This is knocking out what should be perfectly fit, healthy people. 

Patients will be on minimal support, on a little bit of oxygen, and then all of a sudden, 

they go into complete respiratory arrest, shut down and can’t breathe at all.”

“It first struck me how different it was when I saw my first coronavirus patient go bad. 

I was like, ‘Holy shit, this is not the flu.’  

Watching this relatively young guy, gasping for air, pink frothy secretions coming out of his tube and out of his mouth. 

"The coronavirus patients have been having a lot of secretions that are actually pink 

because they’re filled with blood cells that are leaking into their airways. 

They are essentially drowning in their own blood and fluids because their lungs are so full. 

 So we’re constantly having to suction out the secretions every time we go into their rooms.”

 “Before this, we were all joking. It was grim hospital humor. 

If you are exposed to the virus and test positive and go on quarantine, you get paid. 

We were all joking: I want to get the coronavirus because then I get a paid vacation from work. 

But once I saw these patients with it, I was like,  

‘Holy shit, I do not want to catch this and I don’t want anyone I know to catch this.’

 New CDC data reveals that 40% of those hospitalized with the coronavirus

were from age 2o to 54.

This is a novel (brand new) virus ...

There is NO TEXTBOOK for it.

Researchers and physicians are learning as they go, 

while the virus seems to be changing the rules as it mutates.

Do what you can to stay well.  Be vigilant, be prudent, be safe.